Launching a brand-new business website is an exciting thing. But, we like to remind business owners and executives that putting a new web presence online isn’t really the end of the line when it comes to promoting their companies… it’s more like the end of the beginning.
That’s important for them to know, because many assume they are finished once a website goes live, and want to sit back and wait for new leads sales to come pouring in. In reality, no matter how well-designed and planned a website is, it’s going to need a bit of care and maintenance. In fact, if you ignore your new website after it goes live, some bad things might start to happen.
Here are just a few of the biggest risks that come with neglecting your website…
Security and Performance Problems
One big issue with the “set it and forget it” approach to website management is that you may not receive important patches and updates. WordPress, for example, is constantly updating its software. If you skip or ignore prompts to move to the latest version, your website could slow down, disappear, or become very vulnerable to hackers and online thieves.
Disappearing Search Traffic
Your website doesn’t just need your attention, it needs fresh content. Updates to your pages, new blog posts, and inbound links are all critical because they keep your website relevant and signal to search engines that you have timely information to share. Without new content, or regular updates to your pages, Google and the other search engines may decide your website is stale and static. Then, they’ll stop sending new visitors your way.
Unwanted Visitors or Changes
Speaking of website visitors, not everyone who comes to your pages is doing so to find out about your business and its products or services. Hackers and criminals regularly target small and medium-sized companies online – either one-by-one, or using automated software – to look for flaws and vulnerabilities. By looking through your pages, scanning your website, and reviewing your web analytics, you can quickly tell whether unauthorized visitors have been making changes to your website.
Missed Marketing Opportunities
Another reason to continuously monitor your web analytics is to spot developing trends. If you suddenly find you’re getting lots of traffic to a certain page, or seem to be grabbing the attention of prospects with a particular idea, then you’ll want to reinforce those themes or optimize the relevant pages as quickly as possible. In the same way, it’s important to remove bottlenecks and dead ends on your website before they cause issues and cost you sales.
Your new website might go live, but it’s never really finished. Instead, it should just keep growing and evolving, right along with the rest of your business.